Mechanical properties of monolayer graphene oxide

ACS Nano. 2010 Nov 23;4(11):6557-64. doi: 10.1021/nn101781v. Epub 2010 Oct 13.


Mechanical properties of ultrathin membranes consisting of one layer, two overlapped layers, and three overlapped layers of graphene oxide platelets were investigated by atomic force microscopy (AFM) imaging in contact mode. In order to evaluate both the elastic modulus and prestress of thin membranes, the AFM measurement was combined with the finite element method (FEM) in a new approach for evaluating the mechanics of ultrathin membranes. Monolayer graphene oxide was found to have a lower effective Young's modulus (207.6 ± 23.4 GPa when a thickness of 0.7 nm is used) as compared to the value reported for "pristine" graphene. The prestress (39.7-76.8 MPa) of the graphene oxide membranes obtained by solution-based deposition was found to be 1 order of magnitude lower than that obtained by others for mechanically cleaved graphene. The novel AFM imaging and FEM-based mapping methods presented here are of general utility for obtaining the elastic modulus and prestress of thin membranes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Elastic Modulus
  • Finite Element Analysis
  • Graphite / chemistry*
  • Mechanical Phenomena*
  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Microscopy, Atomic Force
  • Nanostructures / chemistry
  • Oxides / chemistry*
  • Stress, Mechanical


  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Oxides
  • Graphite